I'm currently working for a company on the engineering team of about 5-6 people and have been given the job of heading up the redesign of an embedded system tester. We've decided the general requirements and attributes that would be desirable in the system, and now I have to decide on a language to use for the system, or at the very least come up with a list of languages with pros and cons to present to the team.
The general idea of the project is that we currently have a tester written in c++, which was never designed to be a tester, but instead has evolved to be such over the course of 3-4 years due to need. Writing tests for a new product requires modifying the 'framework' and writing code that is completely non-human readable or intuitive due to the way the system was originally designed. Now, we've decided that the time to modify this tester for each new product that we want to test has become too high and want to partially re-write the system so that we can program the actual tests in a scripting language that would then use the modified c++ framework on the back end to test the actual systems. The c++ framework would be responsible for doing all the actual work and the scripting language would just integrate with that to tell the framework what to do.
Never having programmed in a scripting language (we program embedded systems), I've run into a wall where I have no experience with any of the languages that we could possibly use, but must somehow give pros and cons of each language so that we can choose the best one for the job.
Currently my short list of possibilities includes:
My question is this: How can a person evaluate a language that he/she has never used before? What criteria are good indicators for a languages potential usability on a project?
While helpful suggestions for my particular case are appreciated, I feel that this is a good skill to possess and would like to be able to apply this to many different projects if at all possible